The Obama administration is unfairly blocking tens of thousands of military veterans from owning guns, a Republican senator is charging.
The FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is filled with military veterans who are essentially banned from owning guns, even though they may not be a danger to society, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) wrote this week in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder.
The gun ban “effectively voids their Second Amendment rights,” Grassley said.
According to a 2013 Senate report, the Department of Veteran Affairs is responsible for reporting more than 143,000 beneficiaries, including about 83,000 veterans, to the “mental defective” category of the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
Any federal agency can report people to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, but the VA’s recommendations account for about 99 percent of the people who are listed in the mental defective category.
Being listed blocks veterans from purchasing guns.
However, Grassley claims many of these veterans should not be precluded from owning guns.